In 1970 there were two groups who celebrated the first “Earth Day”, although on different dates. Senator Gaylord Nelson campaigned for environmental issues for years before organizing a “teach-in” on April 22, 1970 modeled after war demonstrators’ “sit-ins.” The grass roots effort turned into a national demonstration on behalf of the environment.
“Wire services carried the story from coast to coast. The response was electric. The American people finally had a forum to express its concern about what was happening to the land, rivers, lakes, and air - and they did so with spectacular exuberance,” commented Senator Nelson after the event. At the same time another early environmental activist, John McConnell, convinced the Mayor of San Francisco to declare March 21st be recognized as Earth Day. March 21st is the vernal equinox, the first day of spring in the northern hemisphere. Most people celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd, and there is much debate between the two groups over who really founded Earth Day. Regardless of who gets credit, all did so for the same reasons- to create awareness environmental problems in the political and cultural mainstreams.
The 42nd annual observance of Earth Day will be April 22, 2012.
Take part in some type of Earth Day event this year, or create your own celebration.
A Community Festival - Free and open to the community
Fool for Art is a free, fun, hands-on, educational event. Visitors can participate in more than 100 free educational sessions and hands-on activities; shop the wares of top original art and craft vendors; and get their hands dirty as they celebrate Earth Day.
From the Art of Learning Tent and free class sessions to the Celebrate the Earth Tent and fabulous art and craft vendors, there is plenty of fun for all ages! Fool for Art is always free and open to the public.
Saturday, April 21 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
John Tyler Community College
800 Charter Colony Parkway